Novavax’s Experimental COVID-19 Vaccine Has 96% Efficacy Rate, Drugmaker Says

by Jeremy

Maryland-based drugmaker Novavax announced Thursday that its experimental COVID-19 vaccine appears to be highly effective in combating the coronavirus, raising hopes that a fourth vaccine could be available in the U.S. in the coming months.  Citing results of phase 3 clinical trial conducted in the United Kingdom, Novavax said its vaccine was more than 96% effective against “mild, moderate and severe disease caused by the original COVID-19 strain” and 86% effective against the more contagious B.1.1.7 variant, which was first detected in the U.K. and has sickened at least 3,7000 people in the U.S. to date.

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Novavax said the vaccine was found to be 100% effective in preventing severe disease, no matter the variant — an efficacy rate comparable to that of Moderna’s and Pfizer’s vaccines, which are both in use in the United States.

The Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, approved last month by the Food and Drug Administration, has a reported efficacy rate of 86% against severe disease.

Novavax CEO Stanley Erck said in a statement that the company was “very encouraged by the data” from the clinical trial in the U.K., which involved 15,000 participants and a phase 2b trial conducted in South Africa.  Today marks one year since the WHO officially declared the COVID-19 pandemic, and with this data in hand, we are even more motivated to advance our vaccine as a potential weapon in the fight to end the suffering caused by COVID-19,” Erck said.

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